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Old 03-23-2018, 11:07 AM   #181
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And so, I have been complaining for years about WM's pricing strategy. Yes, I am glad they will price match again... but here is the rub. Why should I have to know and prove a lower price for things they have always had excessive mark-ups on? Why can't their pricing strategy at least be competitive with online retailers?
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It really upsets me that, while they have restored the price match option, it is still our responsibility to force their hand. They would look far better in the eyes of customers (this one anyway) to be the "marine discount leader" rather than the boaters joke they are now.
Tom, I simply can't agree with anything you wrote. It sounds as if you are suggesting that WM should match the price of any item for any customer from any other competing retail outlet, be they B&M or virtual AND they should be responsible for finding that lower price. The costs of operating a B&M retail operation are already pretty high and your suggestion would make them even higher.
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Old 03-23-2018, 12:06 PM   #182
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Tom, I simply can't agree with anything you wrote. It sounds as if you are suggesting that WM should match the price of any item for any customer from any other competing retail outlet, be they B&M or virtual AND they should be responsible for finding that lower price. The costs of operating a B&M retail operation are already pretty high and your suggestion would make them even higher.
Clearly in the long run, they can't build a business on price matching. That is just a defensive tactic not to run customers off. However, the Amazon price doesn't even give Amazon a decent profit so surely won't give WM one. More and more we'll see people like WM go to the Costco strategy. Costco doesn't carry the same model numbers on many items as other retailers. They'll stock sets of pots and pans but combinations slightly different from other retailers, put together just for them. On HP printers, they'll have model 8620 while everyone else has 8625.

Price matching in retail is nothing new but matching internet prices is and most retailers don't do it. It use to be stores and car dealers would promise to match any advertised price, but not any price. Walmart price matches, including their grocery, matching any advertised price. However, very few people go to the trouble. If you want, you can go through all grocery ads and then go to Walmart and where you find identical items cheaper in other ads, get a price match at the register. If you did that extensively you'd take longer than coupon clippers. Clipping coupons is still a way to save very large amounts of money if you buy a lot of groceries, but very few people do it extensively. There are apps like Coupon Sherpa. I once was in line behind a woman using an app. I stayed only because my groceries were already on the belt and I was curious. I watched her get $350 worth for $20.

Ultimately, I don't care about getting the lowest price. What I do want is a reasonable price and we can all disagree on what is reasonable. In more retail it must be at least 50% more than the cost to the retailer, which will give the retailer a 33% margin. In traditional retail it was always double to give a 50% margin, then with markdowns over time you'd still hope to achieve a 35-40% margin.

Boats are interesting. Those sold through brokers typically only have 10% margins but those sold through dealers have MSRP's that provide 30% margins on average. Well, except Yamaha. with 10.5% margins. Interesting strategy as one sees those MSRP's and thinks a 24' Yamaha is far less expensive than a 24' Sea Ray. Not.

Odd because on their outboard motors, Yamaha provides a 16.67% margin but only 10% on Waverunners. Mercury provides a 25% margin, Evinrude 23%, Suzuki 16.75%. Makes it interesting. You want to buy a 9.9 hp motor. Yamaha is $3245, cost the dealer $2705. Mercury is $3675, cost the dealer $2756. Evinrude is $3730, cost the dealer $2870. Suzuki is $3045. Cost the dealer $2535.
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Old 03-23-2018, 12:06 PM   #183
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"FF. Those boaters keep the market viable, got to love them when looking for a used boat."

Indeed , but that's why boats are sold on bling , not sound engineering.

Every diesel owner knows the problems of having bad fuel, yet most boats are sold with a box for fuel, not a more expensive to construct fuel tank that is easy to maintain.
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Old 03-23-2018, 01:41 PM   #184
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Tom, I simply can't agree with anything you wrote. It sounds as if you are suggesting that WM should match the price of any item for any customer from any other competing retail outlet, be they B&M or virtual AND they should be responsible for finding that lower price. The costs of operating a B&M retail operation are already pretty high and your suggestion would make them even higher.
That's not at all what I am saying. I am saying two things...

1) I don't like the idea that things are overly expensive in the store and in order to GET a better price, the customers are the ones that are required to ask for it.

B) I would rather them just have better prices across the board. They don't have to necessarily be the lowest possible or price match everything. Just be a little more competitive. They have the buying power to do it if they wanted to.

I understand a B&M store is more expensive to run and I am okay paying a little extra for it (and the convenience of the locations) but their model of leaving the entire store expensive and make the customer do the work to get better prices is the model I am not okay with.
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Old 03-23-2018, 02:28 PM   #185
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Here is an ignorant question...

Are they matching the retail price or the price + shipping? It is easy to find low prices on some items online but when the cost of shipping is added it often is higher than buying from Amazon Prime or from a Brick and Mortar store.

This is one of the things that worries me about WM doing price matching for online retailers. They simply can't afford it. WM has to ship and stock and handle every product in their store. Their cost just to put an item on the shelf or to receive a shipped item to a store for us to pick is NOT insignificant. This makes their overhead so much higher than an online warehouse based or drop-ship retailer.
That my friend in it in an expanded nut shell. Not that every single brick and mortar retailer will go under... but many will. "Creative Destruction" in the retail sales /retail delivery industry.

As website energized, insta-order, insta-pay, nearly overnight delivery outlets expand... with free return and refund if desired!:

Via delivery charge minimal on top of already very affordable cost of product(s) - or - you could buy several at a time and get 5 or 10% discount on the whole order as well as shipping for free!! What's not to love for shopping that way - in your EZ chair on a laptop or I Pad or anytime on your phone wherever you may be.

IMO - Brick and mortar stores' "burden of business" costs will eventually crush them in contest with "WebNet" reduced cost and soooo easy to accomplish sales.

Only Trump and Bolton can mess even this up by what they seem likely to do. - Just had to add my 10 cents.
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Old 03-23-2018, 02:38 PM   #186
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Ultimately, I don't care about getting the lowest price. What I do want is a reasonable price and we can all disagree on what is reasonable. In more retail it must be at least 50% more than the cost to the retailer, which will give the retailer a 33% margin. In traditional retail it was always double to give a 50% margin, then with markdowns over time you'd still hope to achieve a 35-40% margin.
I agree with you BandB. I will say that my 27 year old son thinks I'm nuts. I feel that I'm willing to pay a reasonable price for reasonable service allowing a retailer to earn a reasonable profit. This gets me what I need and it helps ensure that the retailer will still be there when I need something else. His attitude is that he wants the lowest price possible. Period. He has few qualms about walking into a B&M retailer, perusing their inventory, talking to their sales people, handling the merchandise, and then ordering the same thing online at the cheapest price he can find.

I see the same thing a lot in the younger generation. It is worse of course with big-ticket items. I've seen watch enthusiasts complain they can't find an Authorized Dealer to service their Rolex, Omega, etc... When you suggest they have it serviced where they bought it, they tell you they shopped at an Authorized Dealer, but actually bought online through a gray market retailer. They don't seem to make the connection...
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Old 03-23-2018, 02:42 PM   #187
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That's not at all what I am saying. I am saying two things...

1) I don't like the idea that things are overly expensive in the store and in order to GET a better price, the customers are the ones that are required to ask for it.

B) I would rather them just have better prices across the board. They don't have to necessarily be the lowest possible or price match everything. Just be a little more competitive. They have the buying power to do it if they wanted to.

I understand a B&M store is more expensive to run and I am okay paying a little extra for it (and the convenience of the locations) but their model of leaving the entire store expensive and make the customer do the work to get better prices is the model I am not okay with.
Ok, I think I understand you better. ie, price everything moderately and compete on service and convenience, rather than "price gouge" on everything so you can afford to have big sales or price match.
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Old 03-23-2018, 04:38 PM   #188
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Ok, I think I understand you better. ie, price everything moderately and compete on service and convenience, rather than "price gouge" on everything so you can afford to have big sales or price match.
BINGO!
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Old 03-23-2018, 08:36 PM   #189
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https://www.westmarine.com/buy/west-...?pCode=5528963

I thought this was a fair deal 25' 5/8" dock line under $20 .I ordered 5 so I can double line when hurricane season rolls around .only bad thing is the 3/4" by 35' I ordered has sold so I want be getting them for $32 .
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Old 03-24-2018, 08:44 AM   #190
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I bought several safety items this week. I shopped online and in stores nearby, then called the phone number listed on the WM page for each item. The person who answered (no robot) searched quickly, verified the price offered by others, and matched the price with no hassle, then gave free shipping.

WM is now using all of its stores as warehouses - I ordered 7 items and all are coming from different distribution centers or stores.

I usually buy from my marina's chandlery to support them. they will give me a 10% discount, but some things, like a Spinlock 5D, they don't carry so I shop the internet. I like my local shop and I like WM because there's no hassle to return things. I even bought a pair of shoes online from WM knowing that I can go to the store to swap sizes if needed.

Amazon is a Buyer Beware outlet, but if you are a business you get Prime. free shipping all the time. an ENORMOUS range of products (good and bad). good return policy if you buy specifically from Amazon and not a reseller or private party.

don't forget eBay and Etsy - I've found great stuff and unusual stuff there. important to communicate with the seller before buying, even with innocuous question, to see how quickly they respond. Remember that they will be on their best customer service behavior before you buy. if they are crappy, goofy, non-communicative before the sale it only gets worse.
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Old 03-24-2018, 09:02 AM   #191
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Amazon is a Buyer Beware outlet, but if you are a business you get Prime. free shipping all the time. an ENORMOUS range of products (good and bad). good return policy if you buy specifically from Amazon and not a reseller or private party.
A couple of comments about Amazon Prime. First, many of the items sold on Prime are at higher prices so basically have the shipping charge built in. Often non-Prime prices are less. However, they are doing something else most are not aware of. If you're not Prime or purchase non-Prime and go for the cheapest shipping, they are intentioanlly delaying the shipment of your goods to maintain the added value of Prime. You may purchase an item coming from their nearest distribution center where even the slowest delivery method has only a one or two day transit, and you might wonder why they promised delivery in 7 to 10 days. Well, they will delay processing the shipment so that it doesn't arrive any sooner than 7 days. Otherwise there would be no reason for you to use Prime.
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Old 03-24-2018, 09:21 AM   #192
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I don’t use prime but have noticed (I have access to a prime account) that prime prices may be higher. I always mark my order for the free shipping and many times I get the notice that it will take seven to ten days, it never does and often I get the product in two days same as prime.
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Old 03-24-2018, 02:58 PM   #193
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I never stay logged on to Amazon (or anything.) My browser deletes cookies on close.

When I search, the Amazon server doesn't know who I am, doesn't know I have prime, and has no search or purchase history for me. Once I find what I want, I copy the URL, close the browser, restart it and log back on with my Prime account. Then I paste the URL back in and buy it.

I've never noticed a difference in price whether I'm logged on or not. In other words, neither my Prime membership nor my browsing or purchasing history seem to affect the price. I've heard things to the contrary, but that's just not my experience.

Of course "free" shipping is included in the price. Sometimes there are options to select multiple quantities for a "discount," which obviously just reflects the fact that it's cheaper to ship multiple items in the same package.

But three things keep me coming back: (1) The price is still often less than the competitors' price for the same products, on line or B&M. (2) There's no phony retail shipping price added to my bill at check-out. (3) Products get here incredibly fast.

Last week I ordered a new phone from Google, and the following day I bought a case for it from Amazon. Got tracking numbers for each. Google's partner didn't ship the phone until late evening. It sat in the FedEx warehouse for a day before being loaded (apparently) on a mule train and striking off across the country toward me at a crawl.

The case arrived the next day. From farther away than the phone.

The phone arrived after 5 days. And I had paid "retail" shipping, which I know for a fact isn't what the vendor paid to FedEx.

It would be pretty hard to convince me Amazon Prime is a bad thing.
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Old 03-24-2018, 03:41 PM   #194
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Any Amazon-company listing will let you know if a third-party or non-prime vendor sells that item for less, and if there are used versions for sale.
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Old 03-24-2018, 04:13 PM   #195
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CaptTom. Keep believing that, Amazon and Google know more about you than you think, if they can fool governments they can fool people.
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Old 03-24-2018, 05:45 PM   #196
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CaptTom. Keep believing that, Amazon and Google know more about you than you think, if they can fool governments they can fool people.
OK, fair enough. They know a lot. So do credit agencies, banks and a bunch of other organizations. And don't start about the government!

Mostly I try to stay under the radar because it creeps me out to see ads for things I've already bought, or searched for on a lark. I really hate all ads, but those just grate on me.

Almost as a hobby, I take a few simple steps and I see very few ads. The ones I do see are never related to any browsing or purchasing history. YouTube doesn't feed me "suggestions" based on anything I've seen before.

I'm happier this way, but under no illusions about what big data or big government can find out about me if they choose to. I pity the poor sap who has to investigate me. Very boring job!

Plus, if Amazon ever does change prices based on this sort of data, I'd know right away when I sign back on.
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Old 03-24-2018, 05:53 PM   #197
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C T. Do you cover the camera on you pad or computer or phone with tape when you using the Internet. Just sayin.
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Old 03-24-2018, 06:53 PM   #198
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C T. Do you cover the camera on you pad or computer or phone with tape when you using the Internet. Just sayin.
I ain't CT... but I will chime in...

Yup - I cover camera/video-camera portholes with black tape. Remove tape when I need to use face time... which is seldom. Also have computer set up to keep ads greatly restricted. JO's who come on email go into "Junk Mail".

What I do is just for my comfort and to keep things simple on the computer for business use... BB Gov can get pretty much any item they may want on nearly any of us.

TF [Tollycraft forum only occasionally for answers needed about our Tolly] is the only forum I use as a "steam release" and to keep up on marine doings. I don't do FB or others.

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Old 03-24-2018, 08:40 PM   #199
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I never stay logged on to Amazon (or anything.) My browser deletes cookies on close.

When I search, the Amazon server doesn't know who I am, doesn't know I have prime, and has no search or purchase history for me. Once I find what I want, I copy the URL, close the browser, restart it and log back on with my Prime account. Then I paste the URL back in and buy it.

I've never noticed a difference in price whether I'm logged on or not. In other words, neither my Prime membership nor my browsing or purchasing history seem to affect the price. I've heard things to the contrary, but that's just not my experience.

Of course "free" shipping is included in the price. Sometimes there are options to select multiple quantities for a "discount," which obviously just reflects the fact that it's cheaper to ship multiple items in the same package.

But three things keep me coming back: (1) The price is still often less than the competitors' price for the same products, on line or B&M. (2) There's no phony retail shipping price added to my bill at check-out. (3) Products get here incredibly fast.

Last week I ordered a new phone from Google, and the following day I bought a case for it from Amazon. Got tracking numbers for each. Google's partner didn't ship the phone until late evening. It sat in the FedEx warehouse for a day before being loaded (apparently) on a mule train and striking off across the country toward me at a crawl.

The case arrived the next day. From farther away than the phone.

The phone arrived after 5 days. And I had paid "retail" shipping, which I know for a fact isn't what the vendor paid to FedEx.

It would be pretty hard to convince me Amazon Prime is a bad thing.
There's no difference logged in or not. However, Prime items may be priced higher than non-Prime items. You can sometimes see it's available at lower prices but most of the time shipping makes it about even.
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Old 03-25-2018, 12:19 PM   #200
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There's no difference logged in or not. However, Prime items may be priced higher than non-Prime items. You can sometimes see it's available at lower prices but most of the time shipping makes it about even.
You mean price difference? No. The huge difference for me is that when I'm not logged on, I don't get ads and suggestions based on my history. This is because my browser also deletes cookies when I close it. A lot of people wouldn't want that because you lose your "auto logon" to any site that you don't specifically white list. It's just a personal preference.

You are correct that Amazon is very up-front about different purchase options, like a cheaper price but with shipping costs. As a Prime customer, I rarely find those to be cheaper overall, but I certainly check out my options before buying.
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